Highline Trail Opens in Glacier Park

Patches of snow remain on portions of trail, and visitors should be cautious of wildlife

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Hiking the Highline Trail in Glacier National Park on August 7, 2014. Greg Lindstrom | Flathead Beacon

The Highline Trail, a popular path that tracks along the Garden Wall from Logan Pass across Glacier National Park’s alpine country, is open to travelers.

National Park Service staff said the classic trail opened July 6, about two weeks later than last year’s opening. Sections of low-angle snow remain on portions of the trail and officials urged travelers to watch their footing and come prepared to hike in fickle mountain conditions.

Officials also cautioned that because the trail has seen very little human travel this year, wildlife is abundant and visitors should be bear aware and carry pepper spray. On Wednesday, park officials were hazing a bear that had been frequenting the trail.

“You can still slip and fall, but this is very low-angle snow,” Glacier Park Ranger Tim Rains said. “The trail has not been frequented recently so be on the lookout for wildlife, and stay on the trail to avoid sensitive vegetation. Beyond that, have fun. This is the second official sign that summer is here.”

The first sign, of course, was the June 16 opening of the entire length of the Going-to-the-Sun Road.

Considered one of the quintessential hikes in Glacier Park, the Highline Trail traces 7.6 miles from Logan Pass along the Continental Divide to the Granite Park Chalet, a remote backcountry destination that is open for overnight stays until Sept. 10. From the chalet, the trail descends another five miles to The Loop, the hairpin turn on the Going-to-the-Sun Road.

One of the classic ways to tackle the trail is to park at The Loop, along the Going-to-the-Sun Road and take one of the shuttle buses up to Logan Pass.

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